Whole Wheat Orzo with Ham, Peas, and Parmesan

I’m just going to admit it. I will be useless this week. It’s already happening.

I was in my robe until lunch time on Monday. Laundry didn’t get done. The dishwasher sat full of clean dishes for 2 days (why can’t it unload itself already?). My bag is still packed from last week…and I need to pack again, like, tomorrow.


After the awesome-ness of this weekend, I just can’t concentrate on anything: work, food, laundry, buying groceries. When I got back on Sunday, we didn’t have much left in the house for food this week, but we’re going to another Avett concert this weekend, so I didn’t want to buy too much.

I’m still so focused on everything that happened last weekend that somehow, when I went to get groceries, I ended up buying a new pair of sheets, 2 lamps for our upstairs bedrooms, and an 8 pack of lightbulbs…and totally forgot the dog food and lunch stuff for myself this week. Oops?

I’m not really surprised, though. This happens to me all the time. I make a list and forget to add stuff or I have things on the list and completely by-pass them on accident, sometimes for weeks at a time. This is how I ended up making my own brown sugar – if you forget to buy it enough, you figure out how to work without it.


Lucky for me, we’ve got some leftover soup I can have for another day or two before heading out, but I’m really wishing I had this orzo instead. This is another recipe I made months ago and now I’m just sad that we don’t have fresh peas in the garden anymore. Thank goodness for frozen peas! They save us for dinner more than I should admit.


At least I only have one more dinner to worry about making this week before our fun Friday night with old friends and new friends. Cooking is kind of being put on the backburner this week and being replaced by emptying the hamper, unpacking and repacking, and banjo practice after a dinner of leftovers.

Sometimes, those weeks are the best.


Whole Wheat Orzo with Ham, Peas, and Parmesan

Makes: 4 servings


  • 4 cups water
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 1 cup whole wheat orzo, dry
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 cup diced lean ham
  • 1 cup sugar snap peas
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil, for serving


  1. Pour the water and 1 Tbsp salt into a large pot and bring it to a boil. Stir in the orzo and lower the heat a bit, keeping the water at a gently boil. Let the orzo cook, 6-8 minutes, or until it is tender. Drain and set aside.
  2. While the orzo is cooking, place a skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil.
  3. Toss in the ham and cook, 3-4 minutes, until the ham starts to brown a bit. Add the sugar snap peas into the pan and cook for another 5-7 minutes until they are crisp-tender.
  4. Dump the ham and peas in with the orzo and toss together with salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese.
  5. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and extra parmesan.


  1. Sometimes you just need to give laundry and lists a break and have some fun which it definitely sounds like you’re doing! We all need those weeks from time to time.

    Love the idea of this pasta as a quick weeknight dinner.

  2. I love making pasta with ham, peas, and parmesan, but switching it up with whole wheat orzo is an excellent idea. And suddenly I’m hungry for lunch :)

  3. Healthy and easy, my kind of meal :)

  4. Yum! I picked up a tub of parm over the weekend and have been sprinkling it onto everything! I love how such a small portion packs such a strong punch :) Avocado + parm is fabulousss!!!

  5. Looking forward to hearing about this weekend’s festivities!!! Love ya B!

  6. I love making pasta dishes with orzo! Sometimes I’ll cook the orzo in chicken broth to add a bit of extra flavoring, but the ham is a really interesting idea!

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